It’s that time of year again when the Oscar pundits enter the limelight and start making their predictions for the frontrunners in various Academy Award races.

One category you won’t hear anyone “punditing” about though is the Best Animated Short Film category. That’s because we don’t have any pundits in the animation business, and even if we did, none of them would know what’s in contention. Cartoon Brew is committed to solving at least half of that problem.

We’ve been compiling a list all year long of the films that have qualified for the Academy’s Animated Short Film category. Short films, as Brew readers already know, offer a unique space for innovation and experimentation as few other animation platforms do. It’s where you’ll find some of the art form’s most audacious and exciting annual achievements, and it’s our belief that if more Academy members understood the range and breadth of the contenders, they’d be able to make more informed decisions about the most award-worthy short film efforts of the year.

There are three pathways to qualifying for the Academy Award Best Animated Short category:

  • The film must have won a qualifying award at a competitive film festival. The list of film festivals and the specific awards at those festivals that can qualify a film can be found in this pdf.
  • The picture must have been publicly exhibited for paid admission in a commercial motion picture theater in Los Angeles County for a run of at least seven consecutive days with at least one screening a day prior to public exhibition or distribution by any non-theatrical means. The picture also must appear in the theater listings along with the appropriate dates and screening time(s).
  • The film must have won a Gold, Silver or Bronze Medal award in the Academy’s 2018 Student Academy Awards competition in the Animation, Narrative, Alternative or Foreign Film category.

Here’s a few standard disclaimers: Even though all of the films in our list are technically qualified, it is still up to the filmmaker to take the extra step of entering the film into the Oscar competition. This year, we’ve also tried to identify films that have qualified through the public exhibition route, but that can be done very quietly (and often is) so there may be other films that have qualified without our knowledge. The entire official list of qualified films won’t be known until the Academy presents the eligible long-list of films to their membership in October.

So, while the list isn’t perfect, it’s the only list of its kind that anyone publishes about the Animated Short category, and you’ll likely find most (if not all) of this year’s Oscar nominees below. Last year’s preliminary list of qualified films included nine of the ten films that were eventually shortlisted, and all five nominees in the category.

The list was compiled through publicly available information. The films are presented below in alphabetical order:

  1. 32-Rbit
    Víctor Orozco Ramírez (Mexico/Germany)
    Qualified at Guadalajara In’t Short Film Festival
  2. A Double Life
    Job, Joris & Marieke (The Netherlands)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  3. Age of Sail
    John Kahrs (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  4. Agua Viva
    Alexa Lim Haas (USA)
    Qualified at SXSW
  5. Animal Behavior
    Alison Snowden, David Fine (Canada)
    Qualified at Anima Mundi
  6. Annihilation
    Robbie Ward (USA)
    Qualified at Ann Arbor
  7. Back to the Moon
    Fx Goby, Hélène Leroux (USA/UK)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  8. Bango Vassil
    Milen Vitanov (Bulgaria/Germany)
    Qualified at In the Palace Int’l Short Film Festival
  9. Bao
    Domee Shi (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  10. Between the Lines
    Maria Koneva (Russia)
    Qualified at Seattle
  11. Bilby
    Pierre Perifel, J.P. Sans, Liron Topaz (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  12. Bird Karma
    William Salazar (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  13. Black Wave (Schwarze Welle)
    Mariola Brillowska (Germany)
    Qualified at German Short Film Award
  14. Bloeistraat 11
    Nienke Deutz (Belgium/The Netherlands)
    Qualified at Annecy
  15. Cat Days
    Jon Frickey (Germany/Japan)
    Qualified at Stuttgart
  16. Changyou’s Journey
    Perry S. Chen (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  17. Coyote
    Lorenz Wunderle (Switzerland)
    Qualified at Aspen Shortsfest, Go Short In’t Film Festival
  18. Crow: The Legend
    Eric Darnell (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  19. Daisy
    Yu Yu (USA)
    Qualified through Student Academy Awards
  20. Dead Horses
    Marc Riba and Anna Solanas (Spain)
    Qualified at Anim’est
  21. Deyzangeroo
    Ehsan Gharib (Canada)
    Qualified at DOK Leipzig
  22. Emily
    Marlies van der Wel (The Netherlands)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  23. Fire in Cardboard City
    Phil Brough (New Zealand)
    Qualified through Show Me Shorts Film Festival
  24. First Bloom
    Tingting Liu (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  25. Fundamental (基石)
    Shih Chieh Chiu (Taiwan)
    Qualified at Atlanta Film Festival
  26. Glucose
    Jeron Braxton (USA)
    Qualified at Sundance
  27. Hybrids
    Florian Brauch, Kim Tailhades, Matthieu Pujol, Yohan Thireau, Romain Thirion (France)
    Qualified at SIGGRAPH, Sitges
  28. Ian
    Abel Goldfarb (Argentina)
    Qualified at LA Shorts Fest
  29. Icebergs
    Eirini Vianelli (USA/Greece)
    Qualified at San Francisco Int’l Film Festival
  30. Interstitial
    Shunsaku Hayashi (Japan)
    Qualified at Slamdance
  31. Intimity
    Elodie Dermange (Switzerland)
    Qualified at Tampere
  32. Invisible
    Akihiko Yamashita (Japan)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  33. Kanini and Kanino
    Hiromasa Yonebayashi (Japan)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  34. Keep Your Hair On, Olivier
    Armelle Mercat (France)
    Qualified at Krakow
  35. La chute
    Boris Labbé (France)
    Qualified at Animafest Zagreb
  36. La Noria
    Carlos Baena (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  37. Late Afternoon
    Louise Bagnall (Ireland)
    Qualified at Animayo, Tribeca
  38. Life Ain’t Gonna Lose
    Yoshiyuki Momose (Japan)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  39. Little Red Giant – The Monster That I Was
    Laura Harrison (USA)
    Qualified at Athens Int’l Film & Video Festival
  40. Lost & Found
    Andrew Goldsmith, Bradley Slabe (Australia)
    Qualified at Sydney
  41. Lotus Lantern
    Xingpei Shen (USA/China)
    Qualified at Ann Arbor
  42. Nevada
    Emily Ann Hoffman (USA)
    Qualified at Palm Springs Int’l Shortfest
  43. Obon
    André Hörmann, Samo (Anna Bergman) (Germany)
    Qualified at Krakow
  44. One Small Step
    Andrew Chesworth, Bobby Pontillas (USA/China)
    Qualified at Flickers’ Rhode Island Film Festival
  45. Pépé le morse
    Lucrèce Andreae (France)
    Qualified at César Award
  46. Poles Apart
    Paloma Baeza (U.K.)
    Qualified at BAFTA Awards
  47. Pour 585
    Patrick Smith (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  48. Raccoon and the Light
    Hanna Kim (USA)
    Qualified through Student Academy Awards
  49. Re-Gifted
    Eaza Shukla (USA)
    Qualified through Student Academy Awards
  50. Shahkboy
    Jake Peckar (USA)
    Qualified at Florida Film Festival
  51. Skin for Skin
    Kevin D.A. Kurytnik & Carol Beecher (Canada)
    Qualified at Edmonton Int’l Film Festival
  52. Sog
    Jonatan Schwenk (Germany)
    Qualified at Flickerfest, Riverrun
  53. Solar Walk
    Réka Bucsi (Denmark)
    Qualified at Ottawa
  54. Sonder
    Neth Nom (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  55. The Blissful Accidental Death
    Sergiu Negulici (Romania)
    Qualified at Cinanima, Hiroshima
  56. The Box
    Dušan Kastelic (Slovenia)
    Qualified at Cinequest
  57. The Driver is Red
    Randall Christopher (USA)
    Qualified at Cleveland Int’l Film festival
  58. The Emperor’s Newest Clothes
    Simon Wilches Castro (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  59. The Green Bird
    Pierre Perveyrie, Maximilien Bougeois, Marine Goalard, Irina Nguyen-Duc, Quentin Dubois (France)
    Qualified through Student Academy Awards
  60. The Night of the Plastic Bags
    Gabriel Harel (France)
    Qualified at Odense
  61. The Noise of Licking (A nyalintás nesze)
    Nadja Andrasev (Hungary)
    Qualified at New Orleans
  62. The Pig on the Hill
    Jamy Wheless, John Helms (USA/Serbia)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  63. The Theory of Sunset
    Roman Sokolov (Russia)
    Qualified at NY Int’l Children’s Film Festival
  64. The Wiremen
    Jessica Patterson (Ireland)
    Qualified at Galway Film Fleadh
  65. Tigtone and The Wizard Hunt
    Titmouse Animation/Adult Swim (USA)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  66. Tweet Tweet
    Zhanna Bekmambetova (Russia)
    Qualified through public exhibition in LA county
  67. Two Balloons
    Mark C. Smith (USA)
    Qualified at Foyle Film Festival
  68. Untravel (Neputovanja)
    Ana Nedeljković, Nikola Majdak Jr. (Serbia, Slovakia)
    Qualified at Animator Int’l Animated Film Festival
  69. Weekends
    Trevor Jimenez (USA)
    Qualified at Annecy, Warsaw, Nashville
  70. Wildebeest
    Nicolas Keppens, Matthias Phlips (Belgium)
    Qualified at Guanajuato
  71. Woody & Woody
    Jaume Carrió (Spain)
    Qualified at Goya Awards

Films posted at top of article, left to right: “Pépé le morse,” “Nevada,” “The Box,” “The Blissful Accidental Death”

Amid Amidi

Amid Amidi is Cartoon Brew's Publisher and Editor-at-large.